Aarogya Setu registration to be mandatory to set up new phones, say government sources
New phones that will be sold after the lockdown ends are also going to come with the Covid-19 tracker pre-installed
We had reported yesterday that Indian government's Covid-19 tracker may soon be installed on smartphones by default. Two sources from the smartphone industry had told Mint.
According to the source from the smartphone company, the government had asked companies to pre-install the Covid-19 tracker on phones earlier but that wasn't possible since manufacturing was stopped due to the pandemic. However, it will happen once manufacturing resumes.
Today, we have learned that Aarogya Setu registration will be mandatory for all new smartphones before they can be set up for use. Basically, if you do not register yourself on the Aarogya Setu app, you will not be able to set up a new phone. This information comes from government sources who added that the government is making it mandatory for all new smartphones that will be sold after the lockdown to ship with Aarogya Setu pre-installed. But that's not it. The Indian government also wants to ensure that individuals register on it and set the app up before they start using their phones.
To enforce this, the government is going to appoint nodal agencies that will be "the point of contact for smartphone companies and will be responsible to have the app installed without a skippable step for all new devices".
However, the government is yet to announce a possible workaround for enabling Aarogya Setu on feature phones despite making it mandatory already for all government employees. A sizeable part of the Indian population still use feature phones.